What is a healthy diet for inactive adults?

2 answers | Last updated: Sep 12, 2016
Toenail asked...

What is a healthy diet for inactive adults with many physical problems and much medication???? Overweight from lack of activity and carb loaded diet.

Community Answers

Caringdenise answered...

Hi, In addition to discussing this important concern with your doctor, Caring.com also offers a range of articles and information about healthy diet and nutrition. Here's a link to help you peruse those items most of interest to your palete: Food and Fitness Tips That info center also includes creative ways to get moving in healthy ways. Hope this helps!

Ca-claire answered...

Well, the short answer for this one is: The same diet as for an active person of the same age, only smaller portions.

The longer answer is: it depends. There are many variables here, to name a few: medication, food allergies, any dysphagia or difficulty swallowing, dementia can cause food challenges, dietary restrictions (i.e. low/no salt, religious restrictions, on blood thinners, fiber, liquid intake restrictions, etc.).

If the inactive one is carb loading, you might try having them eat 6 small meals each day, with protein in each of them (cheese, nut butters, slice of sandwich meat, devilled sandwich filling), change the bread or crackers to whole grains, rather than white bread and ordinary crackers. Have dessert at the mid-day meal, rather than at bedtime, and serve a single portion in a small bowl, so it looks bigger.

It may be difficult, depending on the person's age and cognitive ability to change the diet/eating times (my Dad eats by the clock - not hungry at 5:30, ravenous at 6:00 - always has). If you make a gradual change, and show that you are eating the same diet with similar portions, that helps as well. Of course you don't want to starve the person, and be careful about introducing fiber, otherwise you'll be dealing with constipation and pain. Look for gradual changes in weight. Up the activity level, if you can. Take short walks after meals instead of snoozing in the comfortable chair. If they're in a wheelchair, take them outside for fresh air and a 'walk' several times a day, if the weather allows. Set goals as to how far the 'walk' will be, and extend the goal daily if you can, weekly if daily doesn't work - it can just be extending by a few steps, not increasing by leaps and bounds.

Best wishes to you!